The Game & Wildlife Conservation Trust (GWCT) is urging farmers, gamekeepers and landowners to take part in the Big Farmland Bird Count and make a real difference to the UK’s songbirds.

The count, which has been run annually since 2014, is open between 4 and 20 February and gives a vital national snapshot of the health of the UK’s birdlife and helps to ensure the survival of many of farmland bird species, such as skylarks, corn buntings and wild grey partridges.

The idea behind the bird count, which this year is again sponsored by the National Farmers’ Union (NFU), is to encourage farmers and gamekeepers to support farmland birds and highlight the hard work already done by many of them to help reverse species’ declines.

As a spokeswoman for the NFU commented, 2021’s results were fantastic, with farmers and growers across the country responding to the count in record numbers. In fact, 2,500 counts were completed last year, covering an area of 2.5 million acres of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Speaking for the GWCT, Dr Roger Draycott, who runs the count said that farmers and gamekeepers are responsible for managing the largest songbird habitat in this country on their land, so they are in a position to make a real difference.

Farmers can take part by downloading a count sheet from the Big Farmland Bird Count website and spending just 30 minutes between 4 and 20 February counting birds on one spot on farm, plus a few minutes inputting results via the website.

Guides to counting and identifying birds, biodiversity-boosting tips, and more details on taking part are all available on the website. Participants are encouraged to share photos or videos of themselves counting on social media using #bfbc.

Posted in Agriculture.